And the controversy doesn’t begin and end with Obama. Former First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton has spoken at Saddleback Church as well, and while she is also criticized by the Evangelical brethren for her stance on abortion, rarely if ever is there an Evangelical critique of her economic policies.
So let’s be clear about what’s at stake: Obama and Clinton are both advancing economic ideas that are essentially Marxist in their nature. They both have proposed radical new levels of taxation for Americans whom they believe possess “too much” wealth, and unprecedented new levels of governmental intervention and regulation with American enterprise so as to “fix” our nation’s problems with healthcare, energy, and the environment.
This reality poses a dramatic challenge for American Christians. While churches of all sorts are quick to embrace the wealthy when it is time to take up a collection, Christian clergy and the “pro family” activists have virtually nothing to say about the virtues of wealth creation, and the kind of economic environment that fosters prosperity. This ambivalence towards economic paradigms - - which is at its core a failure to adequately understand economics as a “moral issue” - - leads people to attach their best humanitarian intentions to flawed and dangerous economic ideas.
So while Warren and other Evangelicals awaken to a broader realm of social concerns (which is in itself a good thing), all American Christians should keep in mind these core realities: the Bible itself (both Old and New Testaments) presupposes that it is quite a natural thing for private citizens to own the means of economic production (land and other resources); and that it is okay for individuals to create wealth for themselves and their families; and that private citizens should care for the needy of society, rather than abdicating this responsibility to “the government.” From this foundation, we can then envision the private sector doing a much better job with the pressing domestic issues of our time - - healthcare, environmental stewardship, and energy independence.
To put it more succinctly, there is nothing “moral” about Obama’s plan to tax capital (not just earnings or profits or interest income, but, yes, he wants to now tax money in the bank), and there is no virtue in Hillary’s proposed governmental take-over of the automotive industry. Humanitarian intentions must be attached to sound economic principles - - and there is no “justice” in abusing the nation’s wealth producers, or in strangling the national economy.
Austin Hill is an Author, Consultant, and Host of "Austin Hill's Big World of Small Business," a syndicated talk show about small business ownership and entrepreneurship. He is Co-Author of the new release "The Virtues Of Capitalism: A Moral Case For Free Markets." , Author of "White House Confidential: The Little Book Of Weird Presidential History," and a frequent guest host for Washington, DC's 105.9 WMAL Talk Radio.
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